Exploring the Intersection of Art and Technology with ntent: An Interview with the Founders

ntent is a digital art collective that is diversifying the art community through the use of web3. ntent exists between two worlds, as artists using technology as their medium and as builders in a decentralized future. They create collections and experiences that utilize new technologies and tell stories not often told in a creative way.

We sat down with ntent to discuss how they use web3 to empower diverse and talented artists, integrate new technologies into their art, and of course, their FAULTs.

What inspired you to start ntent, and how does it differ from other digital art collectives?

ntent was born out of a desire by the three of us, jiwa, Dr. Banner, and Blue Moon, to bring thoughtfulness and dopeness together. We all have deep backgrounds as creatives, and with art now being truly empowered by technology, it was clear we were meant to evolve to our next phase of creative growth and collaboration. In general, most people do things in a broad stroke. There is often a solid high-level idea, but during the execution, details get rushed or missed entirely. Each detail deserves thoughtfulness and “ntention”, and when you experience true attention to detail, that experience stays with you. It is something we’ve always appreciated receiving and what we strive to give to others. 

Those that work in web3 have a hard time describing it – can this lack of artistic accessibility sometimes be by design?

Well, I definitely think the lack of accessibility in the art world is by design. How often do you read an artist’s statement about a work and it makes no sense at all? Intentional or not, it’s an attempt to put the art on a pedestal to be revered. This is counterproductive and honestly kind of fucked up, especially when, in reality, art is supposed to bring attention to and uplift worthy ideals. 

Though misunderstandings arise when trying to explain any complex concept. How would you describe “love” if I asked you? You can clearly define a single aspect of love or attempt to explain multiple broad strokes, which inevitably becomes quite confusing. What it comes down to is a personal experience. Each aspect of love you understand (i.e., friendship, family, romantic love, etc.) adds to your understanding of the entirety of the concept. Similarly, for web3, we each need to experience decentralization, trustlessness, censorship resistance, etc for ourselves to understand what web3 is.

Technology is generally hard to explain and wrap our heads around, especially when it brings many new concepts and philosophies. We could argue web3 is attempting to be more accessible by design than any industry before it, but it’s still young and a bit complex for everyday folk. That said, web3 is becoming more user-friendly and will be truly world-changing when more people join in. A network is only as strong as its nodes (members) and reach, so it’s actually in the ethos of the community to help onboard people. A more popular and easy to use web3 space benefits all participants, most of whom understand this. 

How exactly does ntent use web3 to diversify the art community?

At the core of web3 is decentralization, which means governed not by a single, all powerful entity, but by all of us. Web3 is attempting to remove gatekeepers, creating an equal ground for everyone to build on through social- and community-based support. 

ntent works to lift up diverse artists, messaging, and causes we believe in, including diversity, sustainability, and accessibility through art. One example is our #OneDropNFTs collection launched last year which was aimed at destigmatizing menstruation. #OneDropNFTs features art from 52 well-known and up-and-coming artists from all backgrounds to raise awareness. Funds were donated to I Am A Girl, a nonprofit that fights period poverty in Uganda. ntent is also about price inclusion, giving people with various means a chance at participating in the collecting and investment in art, formerly a vehicle only allotted to the 1%.

What challenges have you faced as a digital art collective, and how have you overcome them?

Most creators come face to face with burnout pretty quickly. In a space that moves very quickly, you can feel the pressure to show up to everything and to deliver consistently at a breakneck pace. The truth is artist careers are built over decades, so consistency doesn’t need to mean releasing projects every month. Success comes from showing up when you feel good and recharging when needed. Inspiration and motivation to create work comes from feeling connected to whatever practices make you feel healthy. The ntent crew is very tapped into our needs. We each have had pretty wild journeys in discovering ourselves. We always put our well-being first because we know from it comes all other things, and we look out for each other because we know that at the end of the day, each of us will always show up for the work and each other.

In your own words, can you describe what “building for the culture” means to you?

This is a question we think about a lot. Where does culture even come from? Who makes culture? What the fuck even is culture? For years we looked to the past to find culture, but there was always a sense that authenticity needed to be improved. When we reflected on this, we realized that culture is omnipresent. It exists right now. It is being created right now. So when we build for the culture, we create from the origin of culture as a representation of all those who came up from nothing, like we did, and all those that curate their vibe through creativity and inspiration from what’s happening around them. If what you want doesn’t exist, you have to create it for yourself with what you have, and that is what forms culture. 

Can you explain the concept behind “Moment After” and how it integrates new technologies into art?

Moment After is about the moment after the climax in any human interaction. The climax almost exclusively steals the show, but it’s the moment after that provides insight. The moment after will tell you whether the experience was good or bad, whether you want to do it again or not. The moment after brings a feeling and a message that we should always listen to. 

This piece was created live at NOTAGALLERY’s opening exhibition in Berlin over 6 hours. The work was projected across two 30m walls. The audience could interact with the piece by engaging with a book titled “Freedom,” which sat on a pedestal in the middle of the experience, triggering the visuals to react. At 9 pm that night, the entire exhibition gathered as audience members triggered a special live experience by Blue Moon and the renowned performance artist and our beloved friend, OONA. 

With this project, we combined generative art (code-based algorithmic art) with performance art that included audience participation through wireless networks in real time. We later minted to the blockchain as a six-hour performance piece which sold that night for over €12,000! We were not expecting that, but it shows the value of integrating technology and art. 

How do you balance the artistic and technological aspects of your work – or are they one of the same?

Great question. We balance these very intentionally, and they often bleed together. Artistically, we deeply value concepts, strong artistic context, and a visual appeal that hits for all works. The technological decisions, like whether a piece should be responsive, or change dimensions depending on how it’s viewed, are chosen because they align with the concept. 

We should also mention that creating art that runs live in the browser is very difficult because it must work well across an endless sea of varying screens and devices with different sizes and processing powers. In the final stages of work, it can feel like the technology is battling against the art because the piece may be working perfectly on all devices, except maybe an old iPad or iPhone with a certain Operating System version. But the work is not done until it’s compatible across everything. Though at the end of the day, art is art regardless of medium; it just so happens that our canvas is every screen in every home and pocket in the world. So we also build technology to test, ensure quality, curate, take stills and video captures for media, etc. Are these tasks just technology to assist with the art creation or part of the art itself? 

Can you explain the concept of your upcoming Petls exhibition?


Petls is a macro to the micro story of growth, told in 5 parts. Those chapters are Stillness, Breeze, Complex, Storm, and Endurance. Personal or otherwise, growth is a process with many parts, twists, and turns, so this exhibition and collection about growth is multidimensional. The exhibition takes the abstract theme to a multi-sensory floral experience. The collection draws from jiwa’s growth on a quest for self-contentment and reflects the growth of his practice over nine months. 

We worked closely with Protocol Labs integrating IPFS into our systems as part of our commitment to our growth and our mission to further the decentralisation of data. The collections published through the ntent.art platform are stored on IPFS, securing the data on the blockchain and ensuring its legitimacy and longevity. 

How does “[email protected]!ng$” incorporate sustainability, technology, and fashion into a multimedia experience?

From its core, [email protected]!ng$ is a sustainable fashion collection and expanded reality art piece focused on bridging the gap that separates all life on earth as different, when in reality, we are all earthlings: humans, animals, plants, and everything on earth. The expanded reality features a physical lookbook and poster campaign optimized with augmented reality. We also purchased a toll-free hotline, 1-833-ERT-HLNG, where earthlings can call and discover for themselves what it means to be an earthling.

How does ntent’s “[email protected]!ng$” project seek to inspire a cross-industry view on sustainability and harmony?

We work in art, tech, and culture. There is a ton of cross-over between them, and as the millennial and zoomer generations continue to move into positions of power and influence, so do our cultural values that permeate all industries: diversity, sustainability, accessibility, and equality. Our goal with [email protected]!ng$ and ntent is to help foster these values, giving industries a bridge to relate on the same basis. 

What future projects can we expect from ntent, and how will they continue to push the boundaries of technology and art?

ntent will be going bigger, with big partnerships at global art events and releasing projects on some of the world’s most well-known and respected digital art platforms. Later this year, we’ll be dropping never-before-seen projects in the blockchain-as-a-medium category, where dynamic mechanics can be built into the pieces of art to surprise and delight. 

What is your FAULT?

Oftentimes we think we know everything. Of course, we are sometimes wrong (but rarely;) )

PETLS a Solo Exhibition By jiwa feat Carolin Ruggaber is open 16-21 March at the Obey Art Space

Inselstraße 13, 10179 Berlin